When Will Your Church Have VBS?

May 28, 2008

School is almost out, and June is just around the corner. That means many North Escambia churches will soon be hold Vacation Bible School.

We would like you to let us know about your VBS so we can tell everyone in North Escambia about it.

Send us all the details about your VBS to news@northescambia.com or use our contact form.

We need to know you church name, the dates and times of your VBS, your theme (if any), your address, the church phone number (if any) and anything else interesting about your VBS.

NWE Crowns Brianna Parker Queen

May 27, 2008


Brianna Parker was crowned the 2008 Baseball Queen at Bradberry Park Monday afternooon. The girls sold votes for a penny each, with a portion of the proceeds to sponsor the park and a portion to the Drew’s Field project.

First place went to Erica Wiggins.

The girls worked very hard to raise money, and the event was quite a success. The girls range in age from five to 11.

Participating were (pictured below, L-R): Erica Wiggins, Memory Peebles, Liberty Peebles Gabrielle Peebles, Queen Brianna Parker, McKenzie Moorer, Ansleigh Maholovich and Jalyn Bodiford.

For more photos from the event, click here.

Photos by Ramona Preston for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.


About 40 Registered Sex Offenders Live In North Escambia; One Near School

May 27, 2008


There are 40 registered sex offenders living in North Escambia, one of them within a few hundred feet of one school’s property line.

According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, there are 16 registered sex offenders in the 32535 Century area zip code, eight in the McDavid/Walnut Hill 32568 zip code and 16 in the 32577 Molino zip code.

One, Stanley E. Haynie, 48, lives in the 3000 block of York Road. York Road runs off Pine Barren Road next to Northview High School and very near the driveway to the student parking lot. Haynie was convicted of “Lewd or lascivious exhibition victim under 16 years old offender 18 or older” in 2001 and “Lewd or lascivious conduct victim under 16 years old offender under 18 years” in 2003. His address was last confirmed the FDLE system in February by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.

Of the offenders in North Escambia, FDLE classifies two as “predators”, one in the Molino area and one in the McDavid area. Danny Meeks, 55, of the 1900 block of Chance Road in Molino was convicted of sexual battery with a weapon or force in 1996. Loyd J. Berthiaume, 56, of the 500 block of Cox Road in McDavid was convicted of lewd lascivious acts on or in the presence of a child under 16 in 1996.

To search the FDLE sexual offender database, go to www.flsexoffender.net. The FDLE web site also includes safety tips for children and parents.

A new email alert system has been announced by FDLE that will alert you if a sex offender moves into your neighborhood. Click here for that story.

Pictured above: A neighborhood search from the FDLE web site showing the residences of sex offenders within five miles. Northview is marked with the white “H” symbol.

FDLE Announces New Registered Sex Offender Email Alert System

May 27, 2008

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement has announced a new email alert system that will alert you when a registered sex offender moves in your area or within a radius of any other designated location. Citizens can also opt to track address changes reported by selected registered offenders or predators. The service is offered statewide and at no charge.

“I am proud that Floridians have access to one of the most comprehensive sexual offender and predator registration systems in the nation,” said Governor Charlie Crist. “This new sophisticated tracking tool will actively notify citizens of updates of most interest to them and their families.”

FDLE developed the notification service at the direction of the Florida Legislature as part of the state’s compliance with the federal Adam Walsh Act. Citizens may select an unlimited number of addresses and/or offenders and predators to track, and can update their selections at any time. The alert system will send e-mail notifications within 24 to 48 hours of an address change to the state’s registry.

FDLE has made multiple enhancements to the Web site. In 2005, in conjunction with then Attorney General Charlie Crist, the Department added a neighborhood search function that allows users to enter any address in Florida and search the registry for sexual offender and predator registrants within a one quarter to five mile radius. It also generates maps of where each sex offender and predator resides and provides information on vehicles and/or vessels registered to sexual offenders and predators. In 2007, FDLE added the ability to search for an e-mail address or instant message screen name to determine if it belongs to a registered offender or predator.

Through the Public Safety Information Act of 1997, Florida became the first state to list sexual offenders and predators on the Internet and to make the same information available through a 24-hour a day hotline. The FDLE Sex Offender/Predator Registry currently houses data on more than 47,000 registered sex offenders and predators and the Web site averages more than a half million searches per month. Citizens can register for the alerts by visiting www.flsexoffender.net.

Farmers, Forest Owners Can Learn To Profit From Carbon Credits

May 27, 2008

North Escambia farmers, ranchers and private forest owners will have the opportunity tonight to learn how to make additional profit off their land by selling carbon credits to green thinking companies across the country.

Some may be able to capitalize on a new partnership between the state’s largest general agricultural organization and the nation’s leading supplier of carbon credit aggregation services to agriculture.

There will be a special meeting open to all those interested in carbon trading in the Molino Park Elementary School cafeteria tonight. The meeting is sponsored in part by the Escambia County Extension Services Department and will begin at 6:30 p.m.

The Florida Farm Bureau Federation and AgraGate Climate Credits Corp. have agreed to partner in providing carbon credits services to farmers, ranchers and private forest owners. Producers with continuously no-tilled fields and newly established grasslands, managed reforestation or new plantings on forested land and on-farm methane digesters can earn credits based on the amount of carbon sequestered by their agricultural practices. Producers can then sell these carbon credits, also called offsets, to utilities, manufacturing companies and others who want to offset their carbon emissions.

As a contract facilitator, the Florida Farm Bureau will assist landowners in registering eligible properties and practices for carbon credits. AgraGate, a subsidiary of the Iowa Farm Bureau, collects credits from individual farmers and ranchers and combines the credits into sizable pools. The carbon credits are sold on the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX), with the proceeds returned to the agricultural producers.

“We’re pleased that the Florida Farm Bureau Federation has agreed to work with us as we aggregate carbon credits from farmers and ranchers in the state,” said Dave Krog, chief executive of AgraGate “The market for carbon credits offers farmers, ranchers and private forest owners a brand new revenue opportunity. It’s important to partner with people who have significant experience in the state so they can help explain both the opportunities and the risks involved in the program.”

According to Scheffer, “Farm Bureau is always looking for new ways to help keep Florida’s agricultural producers profitable. Giving them access to a voluntary market that will compensate them for their environmentally friendly practices is clearly a good thing, and it is something we are proud to be promoting.” There will continue to be opportunities for Florida agriculture to produce alternative energy and provide additional environmental benefits. We look forward to working with AgraGate, the CCX and the University of Florida-IFAS to identify other innovative projects for Florida’s agricultural producers.”

“Farm Bureau has taken the lead on this project”, said Scheffer, “because this could be a huge benefit to local farmers and ranchers”.

Carbon Sequestration Basics:
Sequestering, or holding, carbon in the soil helps reduce carbon dioxide, one of several greenhouse gases that contribute to the warming of the atmosphere.

Carbon dioxide can be stored in the soil through no-till planting, restoring wetlands, converting cropland to permanent grass or trees, planting conservation buffers and using cover crops.

The carbon stored in the soil creates an offset, or credit, that can be sold on the CCX. Not only is this good for the soil and the environment, it can also help facilitate the adoption of carbon emission reductions by companies. Companies have made commitments to reduce their carbon footprint and pay farmers, ranchers and foresters for these credits.

CCX-approved third parties must verify aggregated offsets before they can be registered and sold through the CCX. More information is available at the AgraGate web site: www.agragate.com, and at the Chicago Climate Exchange site, www.chicagoclimatex.com.

AgraGate, a subsidiary of the Iowa Farm Bureau, is the leading aggregator of carbon credits from agriculture. On behalf of farmers, ranchers and private forest owners, the company has marketed carbon credits from more than 2.1 million acres in 26 states on the Chicago Climate Exchange.

Northview Football Player Honored

May 27, 2008

The Pensacola Sports Association recently honored scholar athletes, including one Northview High School senior.

Nick Prather, a Northview linebacker, was honored at the 29th annual Pensacola Sports Association Senior Scholar-Athlete banquet at Olive Baptist Church. There 209 athletes nominated, but only 27 chosen for the honors night.

Two overall winners, Brandt Hendricks from Jay High School and Danielle William from Pensacola High, were awarded $2,500 scholarships at the event.

Holiday Trash Pickup Schedule

May 26, 2008

Due to the Memorial Day holiday on Monday, all Allied Waste pickup days will change by one day: Monday routes will be picked up Tuesday; Tuesday routes will be picked up Wednesday; Wednesday routes will be picked up Thursday; Thursday routes will be picked up Friday; Friday routes will be picked up Saturday.

Wall Of Honor Pays Tribute To Those That Served

May 26, 2008

On this Memorial Day, many will stop by the Veteran’s Honor Wall in Walnut Hill as they remember those that have fought for our freedom.

The largest such memorial in the North Escambia area, the Veteran’s Honor Wall has stood in front of the Walnut Hill Community Center since its dedication in 2003. There are currently 274 names on the wall, including 13 names of soldiers killed in action. The wall honors those from the Walnut Hill area that have served in the nation’s military.

The Walnut Hill Ruritan Club began planning the wall in late 2001, and they decided that it would be a community project at no cost to the veterans listed.

“If you a veteran, you deserve to be there,” Walnut Hill Ruritan Club President Billy R. Ward said. “You’ve already paid you debt; we wanted this wall to honor the veterans.”

The idea originated with Leroy Wiggins back in late 2001, Ward said, after he saw a picture of a similar Ruritan wall in Virginia in a national magazine.

The club formed two committees, headed up by Billy G. Ward and Wiggins to research construction of the wall and the list of name to be included.

Billy R. Ward began to engrave the names with an antique machine the club purchased off the internet, and there were 220 names on the wall when it was dedicated in 2003. He spent a lot of time on the project, even visiting the Wall South Memorial in Pensacola to get an idea what size the letters on the plaques should be.

On the Walnut Hill Veteran’s Honor Wall, everyone is equal. It was decided that no service rank would be include on the name plaques, just the branch and years of service.

Ward estimates that as of this Memorial Day, about one fourth of those listed on the wall are now deceased.

The Walnut Hill Veteran’s Wall is located in front of the community center at 7850 Highway 97.

For photographs that include every name on the wall as of this Memorial Day, click here.

If you know a veteran from the Walnut Hill area (including Bratt, Davisville, Oak Grove and Enon) that should be included on the honor wall, call Billy R. Ward at 256-2907. Or mail the veteran’s name, address, city, state, phone, branch of service, dates of service and your name and phone number to: Walnut Hill Ruritan Club, P.O. Box 35, Walnut Hill, FL 32568.

Pen Wheels Tries Again; Holds Fishing Rodeo For Disabled

May 25, 2008


Call it the 34th and half annual Pen Wheels Fiesta of Five Flags Fishing Rodeo.

When the annual fishing rodeo for the disabled was first help on May 3, it did not just rain; it poured, putting a quick end to the event. It was the only rain out in the history of the event.

So organizers decide to try again Saturday, and they had perfect weather.

“We got rained out last time, and may people were sad about that,” Pen Wheels Vice President Pearline McLendon told NorthEscambia.com. “I’m so glad we are back here today. It is just so beautiful here.”

“It was organized to give disabled people a chance to get out,” said McLendon. “Many of these people have never fished before. This is just one way to get them out of their houses and the nursing homes into the community.”

Over the 34 year history of the fishing rodeo, it has been held at locations ranging from Ft. Pickens to the Three Mile Bridge in Pensacola. Since 2001, it has been held at Jantz’s Catfish Pond on South Highway 99, just off Highway 97.

“Jantz just does us right,” Pauline said. “I can’t say enough nice things about him. We never want to leave!”

Dozens of volunteers stood ready to help the disabled fish. They baited hooks, tossed a line and offered words of friendly encouragement. Many of the volunteers were from the Walnut Hill Mennonite Church.

About 60 disabled people were registered in Saturday’s fishing rodeo. They were from around the area, including Pensacola and Century. Several residents from the Century Care Center participated.Everything, including lunch, in Pen Wheels Fishing Rodeo is provided to the disabled for free as a project of the Pensacola Fiesta of Five Flags organization.

While Jantz Catfish Pond is not open for public fishing, nearby ponds belonging to Steve Hiebert (Mr. Steve’s Sweet Corn) are open for public fishing. For more information, call 327-4020.

For a complete photo gallery from the event, click here.

Pictured above and below: The Pen Wheel Fishing Rodeo for the disabled Saturday in Walnut Hill. NorthEscambia.com exclusive photos, click to enlarge.


FHP RemainS Out In Force For Memorial Day Holiday Weekend

May 25, 2008

The Florida Highway Patrol continues to be out in force during this 96-hour Memorial Day holiday weekend, which began Friday and extends through midnight Monday.

The Florida Highway Patrol will participate in three distinct traffic enforcement operations during this period: Operation C.A.R.E. – a Combined Accident Reduction Effort, involving all 50 state police and highway patrol organizations (May 23-26); All-American Buckle Up Week (May 19-26); and the highly publicized Click It or Ticket mobilization campaign (May 19 – June 1). All three campaigns focus on saving lives, preventing injuries, and reducing property damage associated with motor vehicle traffic crashes.

“Vehicle traffic is expected to increase significantly throughout the state during this four-day holiday period,” stated Colonel John T. Czernis, director of the Florida Highway Patrol. “We’ll be using all available resources to make Florida roadways safer. We are also reminding motorists to slow down and buckle up. This high visibility enforcement has a single goal in mind – to save lives,” emphasized Czernis.

All uniformed FHP personnel, including those normally assigned to administrative duties, will be patrolling interstates and other major state roads throughout the holiday period. This strategy is intended to increase the Patrol’s presence on major arteries throughout Florida in an effort to deter traffic violators and to provide enhanced service to motorists who break down while traveling or need other assistance.

In addition, Auxiliary and Reserve troopers will be volunteering their time to assist regular troopers during the heightened holiday enforcements. Motorists are reminded to use their cellular phones wisely and safely. FHP urges all drivers to call *FHP (*347) to report aggressive and/or drunk drivers or if they need assistance on the road. Motorists needing emergency medical services should dial 911.

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